After disastrous revelations Monday, which claimed that Netflix executives, who dropped Kevin Spacey after a single sexual harassment accusation, had retained Danny Masterson amid an LAPD investigation into multiple allegations of sexual abuse, Netflix has dropped the former “That 70s Show” star from their streaming network.
The Hill reports that Netflix executives decided only Monday that Masterson should be “written out” of the network’s proprietary “dramedy,” “The Ranch,” even though the LAPD reopened their investigation back in April. Netflix released a statement early Tuesday morning
“As a result of ongoing discussions, Netflix and the producers have written Danny Masterson out of ′The Ranch,’” a spokesman told the Huffington Post. “Yesterday was his last day on the show, and production will resume in early 2018 without him.”
The Huffington Post revealed Monday that a Netflix executive told one of Masterson’s four rape accusers that network bigwigs “didn’t believe” the allegations, and that they were pursuing an internal investigation before dropping the star. The network released a statement appearing to confirm the executives statements, and maintaining that Netflix would explore the allegations on their own before making any decisions about the show’s future.
But pressure mounted overnight; a signature, calling on Netflix to cancel Masterson’s show, garnered 30,000 signatures, and social media outrage hit a fever pitch.
The allegations against Masterson aren’t new. At least one woman reported to the LAPD, back in 2004, that Masterson had violently raped her. But the LAPD mysteriously dropped their investigation into the star’s alleged behavior after the Church of Scientology (of which Masterson is a member) engaged in a pressure campaign, flooding the LAPD with hundreds of letters attesting to Masterson’s character.
In March, however, journalists dug up other allegations, and revealed the Church of Scientology’s involvement in Masterson’s case, leading the LAPD to reopen its investigation and, at the beginning of summer, submit the case to the LA County Prosecutor, who is deciding whether to pursue rape charges.